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Riach Gese Jacobs, PLLC

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Trees and your neighbors

On Behalf of | Apr 7, 2019 | Neighbor Disputes |

One of the things that draws many people to the Pacific Northwest is the proliferation of greenery and trees. This is something people are willing to tolerate rainy Washington State weather for in many cases. However, while having beautiful trees line a neighborhood and back yard is often desired, a tree can quickly become a sore spot between neighbors. Limbs from a tree in one yard may cascade over to an adjacent yard and the roots can travel into a neighbor’s yard or even plumbing.

Identifying the responsibility for matters involving trees is not always black-and-white, making it important to get proper legal advice before taking action. In general, however, homeowners should know that cleanup, such as raking leaves in the autumn, is always the responsibility of the person who owns the property on which the leaves fall according to San Francisco Gate.

Similarly, if a neighbor does not like the mess a tree planted in the next-door yard makes on their side, they can prune it so long as it is done in a manner that does not harm or kill the tree. No person should do tree maintenance on another person’s property without their express consent, however.

Damage from a broken or falling limb may well be the responsibility of the homeowner on who’s property the tree lives or is planted. This liability may be different when it comes to roots that travel underground as any issues with these may be the responsibility of the homeowner on who’s property the damage occurs according to Bankrate.




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